Internships at MOCAD

The Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD) is where adventurous minds encounter the best in contemporary visual, literary, music, and performing arts. A responsive center for diverse audiences, MOCAD presents art that contextualizes, interprets, educates and expands culture, pushing us to the edges of contemporary experience. The museum presents an ambitious schedule of cutting-edge exhibitions, and educational and outreach programs.

About Internships at MOCAD

The Internship Program at MOCAD offers participants training in the museum profession and a comprehensive overview of museum operations. Interns also gain insight into the national and international world of contemporary art. We welcome current students who wish to broaden their education and professional experience by working and learning in a not-for-profit museum.

Internships offer experiential education in a challenging, hands-on environment, in exchange for a substantive contribution to the museum from talented and interested individuals. Interns may complete a number of projects and daily assignments, participate in departmental meetings, special events, and various educational programs and attend regular museum programming including artist talks, lectures, etc. During the summer, a brown bag lunch program takes place weekly.

Departments generally accept one to two interns per session. All interns are expected to turn in biweekly time sheets/reflections documenting the hours they work and projects they have worked on, to be reviewed by their internship supervisor and recorded by the Operations office. Interns must be able to work a full term. Departments currently offering internships are: Exhibitions, Grants + Foundation Relations, Special Events + Facility Rentals, Teen Council + Youth Programs.

Although the MOCAD does not offer paid internships, there are special benefits to being a MOCAD Intern. Benefits of being an MOCAD intern include: a membership card providing reduced or free admission to more than 3,000 member museums across the nation for the length of your internship; curator-led tours of current MOCAD exhibitions; free admission to MOCAD talks and performances; discounts in the MOCAD Store and cafe; and opportunities to meet with museum professionals in nearly every department of the Museum.


Current students over the age of 18 are eligible for internships, and preference will be given to students in museum studies, the arts, arts administration, humanities and related fields. The Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit provides equal opportunity to its applicants. When making your arrangements, please keep in mind that internships are unpaid. At this time MOCAD is unable to offer visa or immigration assistance to international students seeking an internship. It is recommended that interns have a personal laptop they can use during their internship

Schedule of Internship Sessions + Time Commitment

There are two internship sessions and two application deadlines per year. Departments will work with individual interns to determine specific start and end dates roughly matching the dates listed below. Interns must be able to commit to a regular schedule with a minimum of 14 hours per week, which they will determine with their department supervisor.

Academic Year Session 2019 –January-May

Application Period: Closed

Application Deadline: November 30

Start date: January 5, 2019

Summer Session – 3 months, June-August

Application Window: Closed

Application Deadline: February 22

Internship Term: May 16 through August 30

Compensation + School Credit

Unfortunately, at this time we are not able to offer financial compensation for internships. We hope to be able to adjust that in the future! To the extent of our ability, we will assist you in receiving school credit. Please check with your university about how to make arrangements for receiving credit.

How to Apply

There are two application deadlines per year, April 15 and November 30. Applications received after the deadlines and incomplete applications will not be considered. Please review all information about the internships carefully before applying, and double check your materials before hitting send. Interns must submit three items in PDF format:

  1. An intern application form.
  2. A current resume.
  3. A cover letter – please review the application form for information on what to address in your cover letter.
  4. One to two letters of recommendation from professors and/or previous employers are preferred and appreciated but not mandatory. They may be sent to volunteer@mocadetroit.org.

Those applicants whom the departments are interested in interviewing will be contacted. The department supervisor will notify selected interns of acceptance and arrange a specific start date. Applicants will receive a response by May 1 for summer and December TBD for the academic year.

Please do not call to check on the status of your application.